Holiday Tipping – Who and How Much

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Do you sometimes feel tipsy during the holidays?   Most of us do, and not from all the holiday parties—it’s from all the holiday tipping.  This is another seasonal tradition that seems to have taken on new life. Tipping those people who serve us in a regular basis throughout the year has become customary during the holidays.  While it is not necessary to tip everyone who provides service to you, it is important to show appreciation for those people who make your life easier on a regular basis.

Here are a few tips on tipping during the holiday season:      

  • Tip according to the quality and frequency of the service rendered.
  • Consider your own budget in determining the amount.
  • Present your monetary tip in a card or a small gift box..
  • Give it personally whenever possible.
  • Do it within the week of the holiday or shortly before.
  • Offer it joyously.

Now that we’ve established the process, let’s consider who and how much.  The following general guidelines should help eliminate some of the confusion as well as the stress of holiday tipping.

  • Housekeeper – one week’s pay for someone you employ personally
  • Gardner – $20-$50
  • USPS mail carrier – cash gifts are not acceptable so give a small $15-20 gift
  • Newspaper carrier – daily $25; weekend $10
  • Teachers, tutors, coaches and trainers for your children – an inexpensive gift from your child
  • Baby sitter – one night’s pay plus small gift from your child
  • Full-time nanny – one week’s or one month’s pay depending on length of employment plus small gift from your child
  • Dog groomer – one half the cost of a session
  • Dog walker or sitter – one day to one week’s pay
  • Nail technician- cost of one session
  • Massage therapist – cost of one session
  • Hairdresser – cost of one session
  • Personal trainer – cost of one session

Note: If you regularly tip any of these service providers, you can reduce the amount of your holiday tip.

Good judgment and an attitude of gratitude should be your guide.

If you still have questions about tipping or other etiquette issues at this time of year, send them to me or consider purchasing a copy of my eBook, Business Etiquette For The Holidays. It is available as a download from my website or The Kindle Store on Amazon.

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Photo from Savannah magazine

Hire Lydia to work with your staff to improve customer service and employee relations through the use of those priceless and often over-looked soft skills called manners. Lydia is the “unstuffy” business etiquette expert who helps individuals and organizations add the polish that builds profits. We’re talking about your bottom line here.

Since 1996, countless people have benefited from her wisdom through keynotes, seminars and conference breakout sessions.  Her Southern charm and sense of humor have made her a sought-after speaker and consultant.

Based in Savannah, Georgia, Lydia is available for national, regional and local speaking and training engagements. She has suitcase; will travel.

Contact her via email at or call 912-604-0080. Sign up for her free monthly newsletter and visit her website,

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